Obama hails spirit rebuilding tornado-struck Joplin

Scott Hasty places an American flag next to where his house was before it was destroyed by the massive tornado that passed through Joplin in 2011.

President Barack Obama on Monday praised the community spirit that helped a small town overcome devastating loss as he marked the anniversary of the most deadly U.S. tornado in six decades.

Recalling the kindness of strangers shown Joplin, Missouri, after the tornado killed 161 people a few hours after Joplin High School seniors had attended their graduation ceremony, Obama said the outpouring of help was a source of national inspiration.

“Just as you have learned the goodness of people, so have you learned the power of community,” he told Joplin High School’s graduating class of 2012. “We can define our own lives not by what happens to us but by how we respond.”

Landing in rural Missouri after hosting back-to-back summits of NATO in Chicago and the Group of Eight at Camp David in Maryland, a broadly smiling Obama greeted graduating students, and then reminded them of two classmates killed by the tornado.

“It took Will Norton, who had just left this auditorium with a diploma in his hand. It took Lantz Hare, who should’ve received his diploma next year,” said Obama, who visited a few days after the tornado hit and returned to hail the town’s recovery.

Joplin is still rebuilding from the tornado that was up to three-quarters of a mile wide and stayed on the ground for 32 minutes and 13 miles. The old school has been demolished and students took classes in a shopping mall.

Generous donations, including from movie stars Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt, a Missouri native, came from across the country and around the world.

“Some of life’s strongest bonds are the ones we forge when everything around us seems broken,” said Obama.

He made no mention of the upcoming November 6 election, even though Missouri is a state he needs to win to keep the White House.

But the president’s words echoed the hopeful, unifying theme of his 2008 victory that some critics say has been missing in this year’s already acrimonious campaign.

“You will meet people who try to build themselves up by tearing others down,” Obama said. “But you are from Joplin. So you will remember, you will know, just how many people there are who see life differently; those who are guided by kindness and generosity and quiet service.”



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Police seek man accidentally released a year early…

Cops are keeping an eye out for a Bronx man who was reportedly let out of Rikers Island a year before his released date.

National

Pioneers for domestic violence push on

Reporter was commissioned to write this in-depth article. Two decades have passed since the O.J. Simpson trial captivated the country. But in the 20 years…

Local

Newest java joint in bastion of hipness is…

Little may represent the change the neighborhood is undergoing right now like the arrival of the first Starbucks. The chain which is ubiquitous in Manhattan, opened a Williamsburg store at…

National

Black and white are the new orange at…

By Brendan O'Brien(Reuters) - Black and white are the new orange in a Michigan county where the sheriff has made a wardrobe change for jail…

Music

Avey Tare's Slasher Flicks more accessible than Animal…

Believe it or not, Avey Tare — the man in the mustachioed mask pictured here in the pool of blood — may have made the poppiest music of his career.

Entertainment

‘The Leftovers’ recap: Season 1, Episode 4, ‘B.J.…

Last week’s episode of “The Leftovers” was apparently a fluke, because this week’s episode returns to focusing on the Garveys and it is so boring.…

Movies

Interview: Luc Besson says 'Lucy' is very different…

Filmmaker Luc Besson talks about his new film "Lucy," how it's different than "Limitless" and his crazy first conversation with Egyptian actor Amr Waked.

Music

Weezer releases first new song since 2010

Weezer releases "Back to the Shack," their first new song in almost six years.

NFL

'Vicktory dogs' travel road to rehabilitation seven years…

Of the dozens of dogs groomed by Bad Newz Kennels, 48 were rescued and 22 of the pit bull terriers have emerged at Best Friends Animal Society.

MLB

Yankees looking at trade for Cliff Lee, according…

Yankees looking at trade for Cliff Lee, according to report

NFL

Giants lineman Chris Snee to retire: Reports

The Giants report to training camp on Tuesday, but Chris Snee may not be there when they do.

NBA

Carmelo Anthony talks about his charity work in…

As he is used to doing every year, NBA All-Star Carmelo Anthony is going to visit Puerto Rico to do work for his foundation.

Tech

RocketSkates let users roll with a motor

Los Angeles company Acton has raised funds on Kickstarter to roll out a nifty alternative – motor-powered "RocketSkates."

Tech

Knicks star Carmelo Anthony becomes a tech entrepreneur

He's been an All-Star, an Olympian, and a celebrity spokesperson. Now NBA player Carmelo Anthony is adding the position "tech entrepreneur" to his resume. Along…

Tech

Ulises 1 is the world's first singing satellite

A group of artists and engineers in Mexico have unveiled Ulises 1, the world's first opera-singing satellite.

Home

Wallscape on a budget

Skip the wallpaper and ombre an accent wall instead.